Supply Chain Management – Software-as-a-Service

Is spending thousands of dollars to purchase supply chain software draining your cash flow? Is your software becoming out-of-date quickly after purchasing it?

Are you investing too much time programming supply chain software to make it work right? Are you continually having problems keeping software updated and working with different versions?

Are you having difficulties creating the supply chain collaboration and visibility you desire with global customers, partners, logistics providers, sales, operational centers and administrative departments?

Are you frustrated not getting the results you were promised from your supply chain software provider? Are you tired of hearing about why the software program doesn’t work?

If you are nodding “YES” to these concerns, don’t feel lonely as most supply chain management executives agree.

Each year exporters, importers and service providers invest millions of dollars and employ thousands of software and hardware technicians hoping to improved productivity and achieve better supply chain management collaboration. Most companies never realized their supply chain management goals. And, rarely does a company attain ROI value from their software technology investment before it becomes obsolete or needs extensive re-programming. One main reason is over-the counter software packages and in-house programmed software is comprised of bits and pieces fitted together without a comprehensive end-to-end business visibility plan.

According to Forrester Research, an independent technology and market research company, the current global economic crisis will reduce spending on IT products and services by three per cent in 2009. It may not sound much but perhaps this tightening of budgets is what supply chain management executives need to take a serious look at what benefits they are attaining from their current supply chain management software and at what total cost to their company’s productivity and competitiveness.

The affordable, sustainable solution to supply chain management software is Software-as-a-Service, know as SaaS. Software-as-a-Service offers four immediate benefits that makes it very attractive in these economic times: 1) Quick to Implement; 2) Pay-As-You-Go Variable Cost; 3) Scalability to your Requirements; and 4) No Capital Expense.

Consider these Software-as-a-Service benefits that will add value to your supply chain management and company profitability:

o SaaS saves money. No more software installation or maintenance headaches.

o SaaS reduces IT staffing, technology spend, and distractions.

o SaaS provides real-time global supply chain information with on-demand reporting.

o SaaS improves mobility. Desktop / Laptop compatible, no mainframe computer needed.

o SaaS saves deployment time. Get the entire company and all overseas offices upgraded instantly at the same time.

o SaaS allows immediate access to the latest software innovations, logistics supply chain tools and regulatory compliance.

o SaaS encourages supply chain coordination and collaboration. Company departments, customers, vendors, logistics providers and partners can contribute and collaborate in real time. And, eliminate duplicate data entry at your different locations and departments.

o SaaS helps control confidentially. Allocate access permissions based on who needs to know what information. Give your top executives full end-to-end visibility to track and trace, quote pricing, generate performance reports, ensure regulatory compliance, create what-if scenarios and much more.

o SaaS improves network security protection. Built-in global security to defend against malicious threats, hacker attacks and harmful viruses.

o SaaS allows redistribution of IT budget and eliminates tedious paperwork. More time and money available to focus on sales, marketing, customer service improvements and profit to the corporate bottom line.

o SaaS can be integrated into other company software applications and provide seamless end-to-end visibility into your business performance and profitability metrics.

o SaaS provides immediate real time information, statistics and reporting. Enables supply chain management by key performance indicators KPI’s.

o SaaS does not require a large capital expenditure. Pay-as-you-go. Variable monthly fee based on usage.

o SaaS offers scalability. Big and small companies. You can quickly deploy logistics applications and regulatory compliance applications that are urgently needed now to improve your competitive edge and visibility. Add more SaaS features and modules as your requirements expand.

o SaaS can be customization. Quick adaptation to your specific operational, sales, administrative and accounting requirements. Screen views, reports and communication mimics how you want to manage your business and logistics supply chain.

SaaS Software-as-a Service offer the best supply chain management technology at a cost you can afford delivering the results you need to sustain productivity, visibility and profitability. If your current supply chain software isn’t providing you the tools you need to manage on-demand; or not creating the coordination and collaboration you desire; and is more of a distraction and problem than the results, perhaps it’s time to explore Software-as-a-Service Supply Chain Management.